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PETALING JAYA: The combined deployment of renewable energy (RE) and gas power is needed to achieve net-zero emissions amid challenges facing the local energy market, according to GE Gas Power.
Asia’s escalating energy demand, which accounts for half of the global demand, is still much reliant on coal and could pose a challenge for the region to transition to net-zero emissions, the company said.
The global target set to achieve net-zero emissions is by 2050. Sources for RE include solar, hydro, geothermal and wind energy.
GE Gas Power is one of the world’s leaders in gas power technology, services, and solutions.
GE Gas Power’s vice-president for global sourcing and logistics, Raj Thakkar, said solutions structured around the trilemma – finding a balance between affordability, reliability and sustainability in energy – was key to addressing the region’s, including Malaysia’s, energy transition and diversifying its energy mix.,
“Gas has proven to be a formidable force for Asia’s and Malaysia’s evolving energy landscape, which is why we believe the accelerated and strategic deployment of renewables and gas power can change the trajectory for climate change with a significant reduction in emissions in the near term.
“The flexible and often reliable nature of gas will support the region’s as well as the country’s growing energy economy, while also generating real and urgent momentum to accelerate the region’s decarbonisation goals,” he told StarBiz in response to queries via email.
Thakkar said about 65% of the electricity generated in Peninsular Malaysia today stems from coal. Given that about 80% of total greenhouse emissions are contributed by the energy sector, there needs to be a strong commitment from the power industry’s stakeholders for reduced or near-zero carbon emissions from their operations, he added.
Furthermore, he said there was a need to balance affordable cost structures, to meet Malaysia’s net-zero aspirations for 2050 and its goal to replace all retired power plants with gas plants in the next 10 years.
Although the country has made significant strides in its energy transition, he said more can be done to decarbonise its current and future power plants to avoid carbon lock-in, which prevents the transition to cleaner sources of energy.
This could be done through innovative technology upgrades across existing infrastructure, as well as the adoption of pre- and post-combustion solutions such as carbon capture, utilisation and storage or CCUS.